History of Medicine and Health Minor

The History Department offers a specialized academic minor in the History of Medicine and Health, which students can declare beginning January 2014.  This program takes advantage of the Department’s internationally renowned faculty and substantial curriculum in the history of medicine and health subfields.  The History of Medicine and Health Minor provides a valuable supplemental program of historically grounded study for pre-professional students planning to attend medical school, graduate school in public health, and a broad range of related career paths in fields such as nursing, pharmacy, psychology, and neuroscience.

The History of Medicine and Health Minor is open to all undergraduates except those with a major or any other minor in the Department of History, or students taking a Minor in Science, Technology, and Society.      

To declare the History of Medicine and Health Minor, and for all advising matters related to this academic program, schedule an appointment with a Faculty Advisor from the History Department.  The faculty advisors will assist students in planning the coursework for this minor, approve senior releases, and provide any other assistance necessary.

To monitor your progress fill out checklist for the History of Medicine and Health Minor.

The History of Medicine and Health Minor includes a total of six courses: a required survey course and five additional courses (at least 15 credits), to be chosen in consultation with a faculty advisor. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the detailed requirements below.


Required Survey Course: Students in the minor program must take one of these two four-credit surveys: HISTORY 234 (History of Medicine in the Western World from the 18th Century to the Present) or HISTORY 284 (Sickness and Health in Society: 1492 to the Present). Students may take both of these courses for minor credit, but only one is required.  At least one of these courses will be offered annually, and usually both.

Additional Courses: Students must take five additional courses (15 credits). Of these, a minimum of three and a maximum of four must be from the approved list of courses that count for the History of Medicine and Health Minor (see below). Distribution Requirement: At least one of the five additional courses must be a History course that is NOT on the approved list for the History of Medicine and Health Minor.  Students have the option of taking up to two courses from the general History curriculum for credit for this minor.

Upper-Level Requirement: Two courses for the minor must be at the 300-level or above, one course may be taken at the 100 level and the remainder must be 200-level or above. Please note that first year seminars Hist 195 and History 197 may not count toward the minor

Conditions: Three of the six courses must be taken in-residence at the University of Michigan—Ann Arbor, or must count as in-residence credit (i.e., relevant courses taken through UM-sponsored CGIS programs abroad).

AP credit: AP credits may not be used to satisfy requirements of the minor.

Approved Courses

HISTORY 234: History of Medicine in the Western World from the 18th Century to the Present

HISTORY 284: Sickness and Health in Society: 1492 to the Present

HISTORY 230: Humanities Topics in History: History of Psychology

HISTORY 232: Interdisciplinary Topics in History: Mental Health in Global History

HISTORY 285/RCSSCI 285: Science, Technology, Medicine and Society

HISTORY 342: Sexually Transmitted Diseases from Syphilis to AIDS

HISTORY/CLCIV 329/ASIAN 365: Doctors in the Ancient World: China, Greece and Rome

HISTORY/AAS/ANTHRCUL 355: Health and Illness in African Worlds

HISTORY 356/AMCULT 331: Health in America: Patterns, Experiences, and Inequalities

HISTORY 376: Epidemics: Plagues and Cultures from the Black Death to the Present

HISTORY 391: Topics in European History: Medieval Catastrophes

HISTORY 496/497: History Colloquium: Medicine and Health in U.S. Culture since 1875